There's been a lot of speculation where the local real estate market is headed this year. Some industry experts believe that 2013 will be the banner year for Boston's comeback, as property prices have been booming since the second half of 2012. Some say that it'll take time before the market ultimately "heals", hinging the recovery on the future delivery of numerous development projects that are currently on the pipeline. But, with recent months' news about improving property values and limited inventory of available units, majority of the industry is pretty much agreed that this summer - for better or for worse - will be a tight season for buying, selling, and least of all, renting.
Last April, we wrote about how inventories are impacting the current property market and how current listings are enjoying pumped up rates. In fact, if you carefully analyzed the first quarter's real estate conditions, Boston qualifies to be deemed as a city with an inventory problem such that there isn't enough to cover the current pace of investor's buying binge until the summer. There's an awful lot of potential buyers out there that are looking for golden investments, but can't seem to get their foot in the door, literally. This has undoubtedly put positive pressure on the listings that are available, pushing closing prices 12%-15% higher than the asking price.
But all of that is about to change. The number of new listings in April alone stands to reason that the market is slowly stabilizing. Owners are starting to realize they can capitalize on the buying binge, and have opt to list their properties. In fact, the number of properties that were put on the market was a staggering 12.7% in April, putting it as the highest surge in listings since April 2010 and clocking in at 9,350 listed in one month alone.
Yet, despite all of this good news, there's still some who are skeptical - and only rightly so. Taking into consideration the current sales pace, properties are being taken off the market in as little as a week with multiple offers with extraordinary price gains. And even with the record-breaking addition of new listings, the overall number of listings currently on the market is still down by more than a quarter compared to last year's levels.
This then begs the question, how much listings will it take to align the market evenly such that prices stabilize? Well, it'll be short of a miracle, since it'll have to be at least an influx of 50% new listings to quench the market's thirst. But, all is not lost. Sellers are starting to realize that listing their properties sooner rather than later will give them the head start they need if they want to pull in the big bucks. Month to month starting January of this year, the home price index throughout Massachusetts and Greater Boston have shot up at an average rate of 7 percent (some local market trackers are even pegging this at a higher figure).
So, if you have a property that you're considering selling, we suggest you put on the market now and let it simmer over the next few weeks. Chances are, you'll get just enough steam to boil out the buyers to pay the amount you want for your home, without upsetting the real estate industry's recovery.